2021 Outlook

The year has already started in earnest in what has been the busiest January/February period I can recall in recruitment. As in 2020, similar themes will play out until borders are reopened.

The employment market will be busy;

  • A recent employee survey found over 70% of people are open to a change of role in 2021.
  • reported an increase in job advertisement volume in January (y/y) of 6.5%, the 3rd consecutive monthly growth (y/y).

Opportunities / themes to look out for;

  • Hiring of Senior Finance & Operational roles will return in numbers due to pent up demand for change. Both applicants & hiring companies have bourgeoning confidence given the proximity to vaccine rollouts and the implications for the wider economy.
  • Continued depletion of middle to senior management, focusing on individual subject specialists supported by automation and technology, requiring less people managers.
  • Need for 5-7 years experienced staff within Tax, Regulatory Reporting, Risk & Compliance, Fund Accounting and Investment Operations. Continued move towards individual contributor models.
  • Contractors in short supply, with job volumes high in the contract and temp to permanent markets.
  • Onshoring and/or automation of work carried out in offshore locations.
  • Once Europe & North America can stem the pandemic and the borders open, we will see a large loss of junior finance professionals to working holidays visas (for those 30 years and under). Employers be prepared to lose & replace those resources.

A message to First Time Movers into Commerce wanting to travel when borders open. Have you considered contract roles? It is a great way to gain commercial experience now, which will help in transitioning your career overseas.

A message to Hiring Manager’s. If you are looking for a long-term hire, be mindful to question candidates’ short term and long-term career objectives. Are they looking to travel and are you able to facilitate this?

Working Holiday Visas are available in North America and Europe to those Australians who are aged 30 & under. There is and will continue to be a pent-up demand for those individuals wanting to see the world. 2022 will be the year Working Holidays return.

Intuitive Recruitment ( is a Specialist Accounting & Finance Recruitment Consultancy servicing the Property, Funds and Wealth Management sectors in APAC.


If you would like to discuss career objectives, job opportunities or are looking to hire in your team, please contact Iain McLeod at [email protected]